The DTI spotlights small tech businesses

first_img“The opening of the first incubator in the DTI programme is a significant milestone in the effort to create and sustain jobs in South Africa,” trade and industry minister Rob Davies said. MEDO CEO Judi Sandrock said the incubator will unfold world-class technology, teleconferencing facilities, a TV studio and a space in the rejuvenated city of Joburg.Judi Sandrock, Medo CEO, Yvonne Phosa, Mpumalanga MEC for economic development, Rob Davies, the minister of trade and industry, and Michael Masutha, the deputy minister of science and technology, open the Medo Youth ICT. The Department of Trade and Industry has launched the Youth Enterprise Development Strategy that aims to promote youth self-employment and youth-owned and managed enterprises.(Images: Melissa Jane Cook)MEDIA CONTACTS• Michelle Samraj PR and Events AssistantThe Lime Envelope+27 11 467 8998RELATED ARTICLES• New technology hub for Braamfontein • Cape Town: city of innovation • Mobile technology for Africa • More broadband for South Africa • Infrastructure development in South AfricaMelissa Jane CookOpened by the Department of Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies on 11 November 2013, the MEDO Information Communication and Technology Incubator is the first youth incubator in the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Incubator Support Programme. The Micro Enterprise Development Organisation (Medo) will manage the programme, and provide training and support for participating entrepreneurs.Medo connects small South African businesses with large companies to build supplier relationships and boost broad-based black economic empowerment credentials.The DTI launched the Incubator Support Programme (ISP) to provide support for and grow small businesses across industry sectors.“By promoting the incubators, the DTI has been encouraging private sector partnerships with government to support the programme in an effort to develop effective businesses,” said Jeffrey Ndumo, chief drector of the DTI.“In May this year, Medo was awarded the first two incubators in the country and, as of now, is the ICT industry’s very first sector entrepreneur incubator.”Medo chief executive officer, Judi Sandrock said: “The Medo ICT Incubator, based in the Maboneng District, will focus on supporting young entrepreneurs. The location was chosen to leverage high-speed fibre bandwidth connectivity as the focus of the incubator is the information and communication technology sector, as well as an internet TV studio that will facilitate internet TV broadcast.”She added that the incubator will unfold world-class technology, teleconferencing facilities, a TV studio and a new rejuvenated space in Joburg. Further, the incubator will provide free services, such as access to internet, telephones and meeting and teleconference rooms, for to up to 300 small- to medium-sized businesses.“There will be permanent incubation of approximately 20 ICT businesses and virtual incubation across industries allowing small businesses to use the facilities and benefit from the full suite of shared services. Introductions to supply chains of large industry and entrepreneurs looking to develop content for IP TV (Internet based television) will also become beneficiaries of this programme.“This is a very exciting time for smaller and medium-sized enterprise growth in South Africa and MEDO is very pleased to be working with the dti on such an innovative development. The Medo ICT Incubation Centre is a phenomenal step in building economic growth and job creation in the country.”Collaborative citizenry for job creationMedo will shortly launch another incubator, focusing on the mining and heavy industries sectors. This programme will provide training and support for smaller businesses in these sectors.“The opening of the first youth incubator in the DTI programme is a significant milestone in the effort to create and sustain jobs in South Africa, adding value to the growth of business and entrepreneurship in South Africa,” said Davies.The minister said the country needs a “collaborative citizenry” to develop youth initiatives to combat high unemployment.“The roll-out of the incubation support programme is an important dimension. The main touchstone of all economic policies is youth unemployment. The fundamental problems of unemployment are structural and we need opportunities for productivity in the economy.”“There is a youth bulge and more and more young people are entering the job market each year. There needs to be intervention by government – holistic, comprehensive responses to the youth. South African society needs to see an increased contribution of youth entrepreneurship to the GDP (gross domestic product) and an increase in youth-owned start-ups.”The DTI Youth Directorate has developed a 10-pillar strategy to help reduce youth unemployment. It includes:Business incubation for young entrepreneursA support centre for youth-owned businessesCompetitions and awards for young entrepreneursSector-specific youth catalytic projectsA national youth services programmeA “Take a young person” to work programmeA youth entrepreneur collateral fundYouth enterprise data and research programmesAn entrepreneurship coaching and mentorship programmeBusiness development support servicesThe Medo philosophy is “building the economy one job at a time”. Since November 2011 the organisation’s mobile entrepreneurship centre, Treppie, has helped more than 17 000 potential entrepreneurs.The organisation has delivered its one-day business opportunity identification workshop to 1 800 budding entrepreneurs across the country and supported more than 600 black business owners through its enterprise and supplier development programmes in the mining, manufacturing and hospitality industries.The group’s research shows that 61% of those benefitting from its programme are younger than 35.“In 2014 we will be opening 19 incubators across South Africa, starting with a mining industry incubator in Middelburg,” said Sandrock. “This incubator will be jointly sponsored by the DTI, BHP Billiton Coal and Hatch Goba. These 19 incubators will serve the mining, manufacturing, energy, ICT and hospitality industries.”Davies said the government is trying to bring about a major change, a shift in business in South Africa.“We are in a space of change – fast-paced technology. The opening of Medo is a milestone in incubation. There will be many more of these and hopefully they will crack the burden of youth unemployment.”last_img read more

Food contest gives chance to put product on shelves

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Ever think of starting your own food business but didn’t know where to start? Have family and friends raved about your unique dish at gatherings? Or do you have access to local ingredients and always considered a value-added product? If so, consider applying to the Ohio Signature Food Contest as a method to transform a dream into reality.Sponsored by the Center for Innovative Food Technology (CIFT) and Ohio Farm Bureau Federation (OFBF), the contest will showcase potential new, innovative products from across the state.“We hear it often from food manufacturers of their desire to move toward more local-based products,” said Rebecca A. Singer, vice president and director of agricultural programs, CIFT. “This contest reflects that growing trend of the consumer’s desire for ‘local.’ Giving someone in Ohio the opportunity to take their unique, delicious, and innovative product, and eventually place it on grocery store shelves is very exciting.”The economic benefit from a food manufacturing company can be significant based on the number of people employed, the increased income potential realized by a restaurant advancing a “signature item” consumers recognize, and the trained base of resources already available within the region.Entering is simple and quick. Contestants complete an online form outlining the basic details of their food product, and food industry experts will judge each based on the viability of the product, commercialization potential, business strategy, marketability and overall appeal to the marketplace. Emphasis is placed on products integrating Ohio ingredients when possible. Finalists will then be invited to present their business concept and food product to a panel of judges.The Ohio Signature Food Contest winner will be announced during a special ceremony in late July at the Ohio State Fair in Columbus. Following the announcement, the winner will receive technical and business development assistance to help advance a product to the marketplace, as well as production of product to be used for consumer feedback.Production will be available at the Northwest Ohio Cooperative Kitchen in Bowling Green, a nonprofit commercial facility that educates and advises new and growing businesses, provides access to a commercially-licensed kitchen, networking opportunities with other similar entities, and technical assistance.Products do not need to be fully designed or ready for market, rather an ability to communicate a specific vision. The technical assistance aspect of the award will provide guidance toward a finished product.Due to the collaboration with OFBF, increased awareness of this opportunity will be shared with their network. Consideration of membership is encouraged based on the mutual interest in the advancement of local food products.Deadline to submit the completed application is Wednesday, June 22, 2016 (one product per applicant). Click here to view the entry form along with rules/regulations, or call419-535-6000, ext. 117 for more information.last_img read more

Stabbing story was made up for publicity, say police

first_imgIn a twist to the case of assault on a Dalit teenager in a village near Gandhinagar, police on Friday told the media that the story was fabricated by the complainant.“After detailed interrogation, the complainant in the presence of his family members has confessed that the entire story of two motor bike borne persons slashing his back with a blade was made up,” said Gandhinagar Superintendent of Police (SP) Virendra Yadav. Victim’s versionIn his complaint on October 3, the boy had claimed that he was returning home from school when two persons on a bike threatened him and stabbed him on the back with a blade or knife. The boy was rushed to Gandhinagar civil hospital where he received seven stitches. The police claimed that after a through investigation by three teams of police and experts from the forensic science laboratory, it was found that the entire story was baseless. The complainant said he cooked up the story with the help of his friend, who bought the blade used to inflict the injury.last_img read more

Poorly-organised felicitation function at National Stadium in Delhi mars Olympic celebrations

first_imgAn event meant to honour India’s Olympic heroes turned out to be chaotic. It was an eventful day for London medal winners who hopped from one function to the other, but the felicitation by the Sports Ministry at the National Stadium left a lot to be desired.It had all the makings of a hastily arranged programme without much thought going into it. One wondered why the stadium was not used for the venue, and instead a makeshift dais was put up near the gate. Hundreds of people strolled in without any security checks, making it a nightmare for police officials. Youngsters enrolled in the “Come and play scheme” of the Sports Authority of India and schoolchildren were called to attend the function. Besides, fans got too close to the dais, giving security officials a headache.Many of the athletes who were part of the India’s Olympic contingent had no place to sit and even the coaches were left to rue the mismanagement. Boxers Vijender Kumar and Manoj Kumar left in a huff while the hockey team quietly moved to a corner.”This isn’t the way to organise an event of this scale. We were felicitated after the Commonwealth Games at the same venue but that happened inside the stadium not in an open area like this,” said one of the athletes, part of India’s contingent in London.”It was a completely chaotic function. This could have been a security issue for everyone present here,” he added.Silver medallists Sushil Kumar and Vijay Kumar, bronze medal winners Yogeshwar, Saina Nehwal, MC Mary Kom and Gagan Narang all wore broad smiles as they were greeted by ministry officials. They were later taken in open jeeps to the Amar Jawan Jyoti at Indian Gate where they paid floral tributes to the martyrs. All the while the crowd followed them along with a strong media contingent.advertisementAt the stadium, Maken handed cheques of Rs30 lakh each to the silver medallists while the bronze medalists received Rs20 lakh each. Maken said that the government would continue its support to the athletes under the ‘Operation Excellence’ 2010 scheme.”We aim to win 25 medals at the 2020 Olympics. We will provide all assistance,” he said.A faux pax during the event spelled embarrassment for the medallists. Eyebrows were raised, jokes did the rounds when the master of ceremonies called Saina Nehwal ‘Sania Nehwal’.That was not all. Yogeshwar Dutt was welcomed as ‘Yogendra Dutt’, shooter Joydeep Karmakar was identified as an ‘archer’ and Gagan Narang’s bronze medal changed colour to ‘silver’. The athletes somehow maintained their poise.Wrestling Federation of India president Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh slammed the ministry. “This is not the way to treat the national heroes and their family,” he told Mail Today. “There was no place to sit. There were four disciplines that earned us medals, but the names of federations were not mentioned,” he said.last_img read more